The Sun Singer's Travels

Malcolm R. Campbell's World

Last Year’s Fiction – Did You Read Any/All of the Editors’ Top Picks?

lifeafterlifecoverThe editors of the Barnes & Noble Review pulled together the following list of books from 2013 “that have one thing in common: the power to pull us away from everything else except the next page.”

Here’s what they liked:

  • Life After Life by Kate Atkinson
  • The Teleportation Accident by Ned Beauman
  • We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo
  • The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton
  • luminariesSouthern Cross the Dog by Bill Cheng
  • We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler
  • Middle C. by William H. Gass
  • A Man without Breath by Philip Kerr
  • The Flamethrowers by Rachel Kushner
  • The Enchanted Wanderer and Other Stories by Nikolai Leskov
  • The Infatuations by Javier Maria
  • A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra
  • The Good Lord Bird by James McBride
  • Bleeding Edge by Thomas Pynchon
  • GoldfinchThe Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

So, how did you do? Did you read a few of these? Or, are they waiting on the nightstand?

I’m not doing well in terms of this list. I’m reading The Goldfinch right now, and especially want to read The Flamethrowers and The Luminaries. Life After Life is a possibility. But that’s it. Part of the problem with BIG NAME BOOKS is (a) long waiting lists at the library and (b) Kindle prices aren’t discounted as much as mid-list authors’ books.

Since I don’t own a Kindle anyhow, I find myself waiting around for the paperbacks unless I see that the paperback is already out and costs just as much as, if not more than, the hardback.

flamethrowersOnce again, I’m way behind the curve when it comes to reading what the editors and reviewers think I should read. So, do your eyes glaze over with this kind of list? Or, are you working your way through all the “best of” lists of books on various web sites?

Maybe I should find all these authors on Facebook and get on their friends list, and then say, “Rachel, I’ll buy your book if you’ll buy mine.” Right, that’s gonna happen.

On the other hand, I read almost every day of the year, so even if I had the money for all of these, it would have been hard to squeeze in any more fiction.

I’m not making any promises for 2014. The buzz is already starting. I’ll see stuff out there, but somehow I won’t get to it. I know that within the first few weeks of the year. Is that how it is for you?




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2 thoughts on “Last Year’s Fiction – Did You Read Any/All of the Editors’ Top Picks?

  1. Malcolm, hi. I’m slowly emerging from blogging freeze. Life stuff happened. I am also slowly stopping by my favorite blogs. As for your list, my answer is, none of the above. I am having a wonderful time, though, with Spanish author Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s The Shadow of the Wind. I’m lucky I can read it in Spanish. Have a wonderful new year.

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